In an otherwise healthy person with normal blood cholesterol and blood sugar level, high homocysteine level is bad for the cardiovascular health. Nearly 10 percent of deaths from heart diseases are attributed to high homocysteine level in the blood.
Metabolism of methionine, a type of amino acid, produces homocysteine. Homocysteine is also a type of amino acid, high levels of which are harmful for the body. In a healthy individual, homocysteine is naturally flashed out of the blood vessels.
Sometimes, due to certain reasons, homocysteine could not be eliminated from the body naturally. Homocysteine level above 15micro mol per liter is considered to be high. For healthy living, you should have your homocysteine level below 7 micro mol per liter.
Causes of high homocysteine
According to studies, nutrient deficiency primarily inhibits natural elimination of homocysteine from our bodies. Deficiency of certain B vitamins, such as vitamin B6, vitamin B9 or folic acid and vitamin B12 increase the level of homocysteine in the blood.
These vitamins are essential for the manufacture of the enzymes associated with elimination of homocysteine from the blood stream. Besides deficiency in certain vitamin Bs, high homocysteine level may be the result of a hereditary disease known as homocystinuria.
Risks of high homocysteine
High homocysteine level in the blood promotes development of scar tissues in the blood vessels. This increases the risk of cholesterol deposition in the walls of the coronary arteries, increasing the risk of heart diseases, heart attack and heart failure.
High homocysteine level is not only bad for your heart, but your brain can also suffer from it. According to studies, high homocysteine level can lead to dementia. Lowering the homocysteine level at an early age could help to prevent age related memory loss. High homocysteine level also significantly increases the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
High homocysteine level increases the risk of osteoporosis. Studies have shown that irrespective of the bone mineral density, high level of homocysteine increases the risk of osteoporotic bone fracture in the elderly. It can also escalate the onset of early osteoporosis. This is one of the main causes of hip fracture in elderly women.
High homocysteine level home remedies
Adequate amounts of vitamin B6, folic acid and vitamin B12 in your diet could help to reduce homocysteine level. Beans, nuts, whole grains, seeds, yeast, eggs, meat and fish are rich in vitamin B6. Meat, liver, shrimp, eggs and milk are sources of vitamin B12. Folic acid is found in leafy green vegetables.